Deconstruction FAQ

Why choose deconstruction over demolition?

Deconstruction is the environmentally responsible way to approach demolition and salvage. We take apart buildings and houses the same way they were originally erected so as to save, re-use and recycle everything except for hazardous materials. Both demolition and deconstruction are upfront project costs; however, the tax benefits from the donated materials are most often greater than the cost of the deconstruction.

Also beneficial to your project is the fact that deconstruction is a “community friendly” process that diverts reusable materials from being dumped in a landfill; and is also recognized as an “environment friendly” process that is compatible with LEED point certification standards.

What are the primary benefits of deconstruction?

There is a long list, but for starters, the tax breaks! (Read here if want the full discourse of benefits) Your deconstruction project will be considered a large charitable tax donation in the eyes of the government, and as mentioned earlier, the breaks often offset the upfront costs, and sometimes you even come out ahead! Not to mention deconstruction can truly help make the world a “greener” place by creating awareness of salvage and recycling practices,  creating jobs, and providing opportunities for education and charity. Demolition waste accounts for 48% of the waste in America, so if 90% of a deconstructed home can be reused, repurposed, or recycled, it’s a no-brainer.

How much of the original building materials can be re-used?

In most cases there is a 90%-95% retention of building materials, which creates a positive impact on our environment through the reduction of new manufacturing. Materials often unable to be recycled are things such as insulation and stucco.

What items can be re-used or recycled?

You name it! During deconstructions, people find other uses for lots of items. While the chief material that comes out of the process is lumber, many people often re-use doors, windows, kitchen cabinets, appliances, toilets, and lighting fixtures. Even nails, carpet, copper wire, toilets, tubs, faucets, and switch boxes can be recycled.

What happens to all the raw materials after deconstruction?

After a home or structure is disassembled, the building materials typically go to nonprofit building centers such as the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, who collect the goods and then sell them directly to the public at highly affordable prices. Other materials such as lumber and brick may go to a processing facility or sold in bulk to be re-used for other various applications.

Can the tax breaks really work in my favor?

Yes! Please read this article for some real examples of people who saved by choosing deconstruction. You can also educate yourself by reading Form 8283 and hear it from the horse’s mouth, the IRS.

If you have some extra time on your hands and want to really learn all about deconstruction, please read here and get an education!

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